Lean Six Sigma Improves Security Clearance Processes

Posted by: meikah | 29 April 2008 | 10:44 pm

According to FCW.com:

A governmentwide plan to overhaul the security clearance process and introduce more automation will soon be headed for White House consideration, according to leaders of an interagency team that is crafting the proposal.

For this purpose, a Joint Security Clearance Process Reform Team is formed. This team now will use Lean Six Sigma to achieve its goal, which is to reduce the time for employees to get or process their clearance.

Currently, employess get cleared in 120 days. But the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 require faster clearances. Thus, the goal of the team now is to process security clearances within 60 days. The whole team hopes that by December 2009, security clearances should be completed in 60 days.

Such an improvement requires a complete overhaul of the clearance process, and Lean Six Sigma fits the bill. How they plan to do this, read: Clearance process gets makeover.

Governments, whether in the US or overseas, are famous for their beauracratic red tapes. I wish the Philippine government would discover Lean or Six Sigma, too. :)

Filed under: Lean Six Sigma, Processes, Public Sector, Services, Six Sigma, Six Sigma Organizations

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Taking Six Sigma Higher: Leadership Leader

Posted by: meikah | 29 April 2008 | 8:34 pm

At ManageSmarter Training Soapbox, I found LeadershipSigma. It says there that the new enterprise imperative is leadership quality from bottom to top. This kind of leadership style engages everybody to participate in the goings-on of the company. I agree! The people in the floorshop or in the frontline are the best ones to assess the organization. They are the direct contact of co-employees and customers.

leadershipsigmaThis is not to say however that anyone in the organization can make decisions and carry them out himself. A leadership from top to bottom still recognizes the organizational structure but taking into consideration the observations, suggestions, recommendations of everyone in the company. There is open consultation and transparent movements.

That is the LeadershipSigma mindset. Taking into account the concepts and tools of Six Sigma and Lean, the LeadershipSigma mindset:

…encourages leadership capability and a leadership culture throughout the organization.

This means leadership no longer can be the private preserve of top executives once they have advanced significantly in their career. Nor is it sufficient to reactively develop business leaders by simply mapping their growth and development to a formalized competency framework. The dynamic complexity of the 21st century demands a proactive process that builds leadership talent everywhere and all the time. Cultivating a whole-firm leadership mind-set energizes the workplace; increases employee engagement; and enables the organization to flex, adapt, and innovate in the global marketplace.

What is your leadership style? Are you:

  • Relationship Builder – Leaders build strong relationships with peers, colleagues, leaders, and associates internal and external to the enterprise.
  • Communicator – Leaders influence and persuade by employing all communication means and media with presence, skill, and confidence.
  • Innovator – Leaders challenge the status quo and create new opportunities for individual, team, and enterprise performance and results.
  • Global Citizen – Leaders operate in seamless, borderless execution, working effectively with diverse colleagues and multiple cultures.
  • Mentor/Coach – Leaders are dedicated to building the next generation of talent, making themselves redundant by ensuring and securing the leadership pipeline.

Read more…

Photo from Stock.Xchng

Filed under: LeadershipSigma, Lean, Six Sigma, Six Sigma Organizations

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Sutherland Global Services Best in IT Enabled Services

Posted by: meikah | 27 April 2008 | 8:14 pm

Sutherland Best in Six Sigma Case StudySutherland Global Services, a leading multi-national Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) provider, is again best in IT Enabled Services for the second consecutive year in the 2008 Six Sigma Case Study Presentation Contest held by the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI) and the Quality Council of India (QCI).

Sutherland’s Six Sigma case study showcased the process development and productivity enhancements that were achieved through the implementation of Six Sigma projects for two of the world’s largest PC manufacturers.

Sutherland used the Six Sigma quality framework to develop a data driven approach aimed at identifying and eliminating process inefficiencies associated with maximizing the lifetime value of its clients’ customers. The resulting process improvements increased customer satisfaction levels and reliability of service for both the clients.

Read more…

Related posts
A BPO Bags Six Sigma Awards
When is Six Sigma Six Sigma?

Filed under: Call Center/BPO, Six Sigma, Six Sigma Organizations

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Six Sigma Black Belts at US Forces Korea

Posted by: meikah | 27 April 2008 | 7:47 pm

Lean Six Sigma at US Forces KoreaAbout a week ago, Stars and Stripes reported that 19 members of the 8th US Army Korea became Black Belts. The new Black Belts would be part of Lean Six Sigma, now in its third year at U.S. Forces Korea.

So far the the 8th Army has completed 51 Lean Six Sigma projects, saving about $51 million. According to Ron Rezek, a special assistant to the Secretary of the Army who works in business transformation, U.S. Forces Korea’s Lean Six Sigma program is ‘at the front of the pack’ Army-wide, and students get an unusually high amount of support from their commanders. Read more…

It seems that US Army is also getting its other bases outside of the U.S. into Lean Six Sigma. This should be a good thing.

iSixSigma News

Photo credit

Filed under: Black Belt, Lean Six Sigma, Six Sigma Organizations, US Army, US Forces Korea

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Does Your Meeting Have SigmaSense?

Posted by: meikah | 25 April 2008 | 12:53 am

The last fun, yet fruitful meeting I went to was ages ago! Those were times when I was still active in the Jaycees. In the Jaycees, we use the parliamentary procedure. This is how the procedure goes: agenda is distributed at least three days before the meeting (often RSVP), determine a quorum, and follow closely the agenda (and the order of things using the parliamentary rules) during the meeting.

Meetings done using the parliamentary rules are fast, fair and orderly, and definitely get things done. Now, I’m not quite sure if these rules would work in all situations. But considering the advantages of using the parliamentary procedure, I’m sure people can use it for any purpose.

For Six Sigma meetings, Grouputer Solutions has come up with SigmaSense. SigmaSense is a “one-of-a-kind” online collaborative meeting program designed for Six Sigma project leaders to execute DMAIC with local and global teams, faster and with less training.

According to the press release:

SigmaSense equips project leaders with structured, online meeting tools, techniques, guidance and optional statistical and process mapping tools to consistently implement the DMAIC and Business Improvement methodologies at Best Practice standards. Meeting time is accelerated by as much as four times and productivity is increased by up to 200 percent.1

The program aims to eliminate the most cited reasons for project failure including lack of internal skills to implement programs, long project cycle times, extended training required to gain proficiency and the lack of a structured methodology to guide delivery of the complex, team-driven Six Sigma process.

Read more…

To me anything that puts order to things and generates solutions is definitely worth checking out.

If you have used SigmaSense, please do tell us about it.

iSixSigma News

Filed under: Meetings, Processes, Six Sigma

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SixSig is Back Up!

Posted by: meikah | 24 April 2008 | 11:54 pm

SixSig is now running on a new server, and I’m hoping this will be a better home. I apologize for the erratic days of SixSig.

And I thank all those who keep checking the site out despite it’s bubble-like existence for the past couple of weeks.

That being said, I’m back in business. :)

Filed under: General, Six Sigma

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Webcast: Successful Use of Six Sigma in Process Transformation

Posted by: meikah | 18 April 2008 | 3:48 am

Date: June 4, 2008
Time: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM ET Time Zone Converter

This webcast will discuss:

  • Actions to gain executive leadership buy-in.
  • CIGNA’s Lean Six Sigma Model’s implementation and deployment across the corporation.
  • Key best practices and lessons learned from CIGNA’s Six Sigma Initiative.

Read more…

Leslie A. Behnke, Vice President, Six-Sigma Business Excellence, CIGNA Corporation

Robert Parent, Program Director, The Conference Board

The Conference Board, a Six Sigma Zone featured link

Filed under: General, Processes, Six Sigma, Six Sigma References, Six Sigma Zone

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Three Companies Continue Six Sigma

Posted by: meikah | 3 April 2008 | 9:56 pm

Among the big Six Sigma news this recent week are three companies that vow to continue with Six Sigma to become bigger and better.

First is Hooker Furniture, provider of high-quality entertainment centers, home office furniture. The company has enjoyed big savings and benefits. And this is their business outlook: “We expect business to remain challenging well into fiscal 2009. We believe we’ve demonstrated we can be profitable in this environment, and we have numerous efforts underway to grow our business including an executive dedicated to increasing sales with targeted national accounts, entering new product categories through our recent acquisitions and opening the West Coast Distribution Center. Operationally, we have Lean Six Sigma initiatives underway throughout the Company to eliminate waste, create value and operate more efficiently in all of our processes. We believe we are well positioned to reap the benefits when the economy turns around.” Read more…

Next is Wolverine Tube, provider of copper and copper alloy tube, fabricated products, brazing alloys and many others. The company attributes their success to Six Sigma: “Wolverine’s operational improvement efforts throughout 2007 were focused on strengthening its managerial and technical talent along with establishing a continuous improvement culture. Significant operational progress was made in 2007 as our continuous improvement culture has been established through a focused implementation of lean manufacturing and six sigma initiatives, as well as new technologies to reduce cost and improve quality performance. These efforts combined with a sharpened focus on customer satisfaction resulted in enhanced key customer relationships, improved manufacturing efficiencies and strengthening the operational base from which to grow the business.” Read more…

And the third company is Aleris International, a global leader in aluminum rolled products and extrusions, aluminum recycling and specification alloy production. Many of their savings and benefits are because of the company’s Six Sigma initiatives. “Positively impacting the 2007 fourth quarter results were benefits resulting from our Six Sigma and other productivity initiatives. Segment income was $9.9 million in the fourth quarter of 2007 compared to $14.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2006. Segment EBITDA, excluding purchase accounting adjustments, was $24.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2007 compared to $22.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2006. Segment EBITDA benefited from strong European performance, the impact of the Wabash acquisition and productivity gains resulting from our Six Sigma and other initiatives; these gains were partially offset by declining scrap spreads in our North American specification alloys business and a $4.7 million charge in the fourth quarter of 2007 for environmental matters in North America. Shipment levels increased by 242 million pounds from the prior year’s fourth quarter, driven by the acquisition of Wabash Alloys, which accounted for 170 million pounds of the increase.” Read more…

iSixSigma News

Filed under: Aleris International, Benefits and Savings, Hooker Furniture, Lean Six Sigma, Six Sigma, Six Sigma Organizations, Wolverine Tube

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Six Sigma for the Church

Posted by: meikah | 1 April 2008 | 9:31 pm

Why not? The church is an organization, too, and thus has processes working toward some goal.

This is what Paul Brantley, the new director of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, wants. He aims to make his church to be the world’s best-run organization, To do that, he’s looking at some form of assessment to help him achieve his goals. He takes inspiration from successful companies across many industries. Read about his plans for the church.
Six Sigma or any other continuous improvement methodologies will definitely do good for any organization.

We wish Paul Brantley good luck. Just by considering improvement and assessment, already he’s on the right track.

Filed under: Church, Metrics, Six Sigma, Six Sigma Organizations

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